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Samsung Galaxy Note 8 offers stellar performance

Consumer Reports News

The newest tablet in Samsung's lineup, the Galaxy Note 8 ($400) received top marks in our latest Ratings of 7- to 8-inch Wi-Fi tablets. It's largely the Galaxy's versatility that puts it at the top, with its innovative stylus and a feature lineup that includes GPS and a memory-card reader. (In comparison, the iPad Mini has none of those, but it also costs $70 less).

One of the features that sets this tablet apart is the Note software that comes with it. You get handwriting recognition, the ability to multitask by running two apps side by side (with certain apps only), and Adobe Photoshop Touch, a robust photo editor that works with the stylus. The Galaxy Note 8 is available only in a 16GB version, but the memory-card reader leaves plenty of room for memory expansion.

For more details on these and other models, check our buying guide and new tablet Ratings.

Other new tablets in our Ratings include three from Coby, available in 7-, 8-, and 10.1-inch sizes. They're low in cost, but you'll have to make some sacrifices to save that money. Also new is the Archos GamePad, a tablet with built-in game controls. It's inexpensive for a tablet, at $180, but it doesn't live up to what you probably demand from either a tablet or a portable gaming device.

Also, Dell has added to its line of Windows 8 tablets with the Dell Latitude 10 Essentials ($500). It's a lower-cost version of the Latitude 10. Dell cut a few corners to get the price down to $150 less than the Wi-Fi Latitude 10, including eliminating the removable battery and GPS.

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